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Politics

Defense Minister Says Greece Now Looking to Acquire More Warships

ATHENS – While there’s calm now with Turkey – which had been Greek airspace and waters – Greece is still considering purchase of more warships for the Navy, Defense Minister Nikos Dendias said.

Speaking at a defense exhibition in Athens, he said that there’s interest in acquiring a fourth Belharra-class frigate from France, along with an undisclosed number of corvettes. “The possibility remains under consideration,” he said.

In 2021, Greece signed an agreement with France to buy three Belharra frigates, with the option for a fourth additional vessel when Greece was building up its arsenal and defenses at a time when there was fear of a conflict with Turkey.

He also said Greece will only accept the Freedom-class Littoral Combat Ships (LCS) from the United States as “free assistance” and only those whose technical problems had been fixed because Greece can’t afford to repair them.

He also said that Greece wants to co-produce the new American Constellation-class frigates (FFGX) and take part in their making. The Elefsina shipyard earlier got a $125 million loan with the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) to upgrade and modernize its aged facilities.

DFC Chief Executive Officer Scott Nathan signed the deal with ONEX Elefsis Shipyard and Industries (ONEX)  and said the group “is proud to advance this high-quality infrastructure project that will generate more reliable access to energy and foster greater economic growth and prosperity for our partners across the region.”

Naval News earlier reported that Greece was planning to build a scaled-down version. This Europeanized iteration of the FFG-62 is expected to feature fewer weapons and a smaller size, outlining a distinct approach to the naval project.

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